Boys Varsity Tennis – Oct 12th – Issaquah vs. Newport

Jenni Young, Staff Writer

On Tuesday October. 12, the Issaquah High School Varsity Boys’ Tennis team had a heated match with Newport High School, the final score being 1-6. The game started out with six separate matches, all of them being played consecutively. In tennis, seven matches are played, and each consecutive win contributes to the final team score. The majority of the matches were 1v1, however there were three double games. Each player on the team was able to participate in a match, whether individually or with another teammate.

Throughout the game, many impressive plays were made from each player. Junior Eric Tao had a respectable high and assertive serve that was well-executed several times throughout his individual match. In sophomore Anish Rudramurthy’s single, he used speed and accuracy to send the ball flying to the other side at lightning speed. The energy he exerted each play made his match extremely entertaining to watch. Likewise, junior Luke Sarausad demonstrated extreme focus, hustle, and persistence in his match, which explains his single victory.

Throughout each match, a variation of hits was used by each player. Players often alternated between using a fast and slow approach, to keep the element of surprise. Many of the players use different strategies that work best for them, to succeed in their matches. Junior Eugene Park said, “I just forget the score even though I’m losing, and I feel more comfortable.” The power that mindset plays in overall performance is vital. Sophomore Daniel Lee’s technique was to “intimidate them.” This approach involves direct focus on the competition, and making their opponent feel inferior. The differing mindset of both of these players can be best explained by Coach Niko Hakes who stated, “Tennis is an individual sport, so I give players personal feedback throughout each of their matches.”

As for the 2v2 matches, it became apparent that proper communication and teamwork is vital for these types of matches. Hakes stated, “We know how certain players play and try to utilize their strengths while exposing the other team’s weakness.” He continued to mention that one duo, juniors Jake Scalzo and Ben Kang, are aggressive players who use their assertiveness as an advantage throughout their matches. 

All in all, the team performed with passion and precision. Despite their loss, the players put forth dedication and full effort. No cold weather could stop these guys from competing, and working hard to represent Issaquah well.